A lottery winner who scooped the jackpot aged 16 said it changed her life "overnight" – but she ended up splurging the lot.
Callie Rogers won a staggering £1.8million in the draw but ended up declaring bankruptcy and living off Universal Credit after she splashed her cash on swanky parties and plastic surgery. She had been working as a shop assistant in Cumbria earning just £3.60 an hour when she won the life-changing sum back in 2003.
"You’re only 16, with all that responsibility. At that age, you can get the best advice ever but you’re not in a position to listen," Callie explained.
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"I was too young. Overnight I went from carefree child to adult.”
Some of Callie's winnings were spent on nights out as well as three boob jobs. She also spent a whopping £300,000 on designer clothes, but still had enough cash left over to buy a house.
She even dished out thousands to friends and family. However, her good luck quickly took a turn for the worse and led to serious mental health problems.
She even tried to take her own life and struggled with depression and drugs. She also started to withdraw from the people around her after she started experiencing trust issues relating to her winnings.
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Callie said she "just wanted to go back to having a normal life". Fortunately, the National Lottery and Camelot did give her support with her finances.
A spokesperson said: "Callie received extensive support from us which lasted many years. She didn't take up the independent financial and legal advice offered by us.
"However, our winner's team fully supported her and helped her to handle media interest. We will continue to support Callie in any way we can if she wants."
By 2021 Callie declared bankruptcy and was relying on Universal Credit to get by. However, things have now turned around.
Callie, now a mum-of-three, works as a carer and supports herself. She also went back to school to study social care.
One of her children, a six-year-old boy, has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy. "It’s my one big regret is that the money isn’t here for Blake," she said.
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"He loves sensory stimulation. If I had that money, I’d give him the biggest sensory room you could buy.
"My kids don’t want for anything," she continued. "At the end of the month there is usually enough for a few treats, but I couldn’t go out and buy a new car tomorrow. If I want a holiday, I have to save."
For emotional support, you can call the Samaritans 24-hour helpline on 116 123, [email protected], visit a Samaritans branch in person or go to the Samaritans website.
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